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Old 06-24-2019   #1
 
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Default Helix DSP Pro MK2 & Hi Res Music w/ iPhone XS

I have a Kenwood DDX9905S head unit w/ a Helix DSP Pro MK2 & a couple of Hertz amps. I have a pretty extensive library of music on my iPhone XS. Unfortunately, the Kenwood head unit will not play the Apple Hi Res. formats (ALAC or AAC). My thought has been to run a USB directly to the DSP to take advantage of the Hi Res music file. The only problem with that is - it's still my phone!... When a call comes in, I'm assuming, the phone will NOT automatically switch to Bluetooth nor will I be able to answer the call through the head unit.

Being that this is well beyond my scope of knowledge, I'm hoping some of you could provide a solution to this situation.

On a side note - I've been working with SkizeR on my setup. He was the one who originally mentioned this idea to me. But we never discussed the details.

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Old 06-24-2019   #2
 
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Default Re: Helix DSP Pro MK2 & Hi Res Music w/ iPhone XS

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Originally Posted by DanKind75 View Post
I have a Kenwood DDX9905S head unit w/ a Helix DSP Pro MK2 & a couple of Hertz amps. I have a pretty extensive library of music on my iPhone XS. Unfortunately, the Kenwood head unit will not play the Apple Hi Res. formats (ALAC or AAC). My thought has been to run a USB directly to the DSP to take advantage of the Hi Res music file. The only problem with that is - it's still my phone!... When a call comes in, I'm assuming, the phone will NOT automatically switch to Bluetooth nor will I be able to answer the call through the head unit.

Being that this is well beyond my scope of knowledge, I'm hoping some of you could provide a solution to this situation.

On a side note - I've been working with SkizeR on my setup. He was the one who originally mentioned this idea to me. But we never discussed the details.
How about just adding the Bluetooth HEC to the Helix?

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Old 06-24-2019   #3
 
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Default Re: Helix DSP Pro MK2 & Hi Res Music w/ iPhone XS

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How about just adding the Bluetooth HEC to the Helix?
Holy CRAP! I just looked that up on their website. That might just work. But will the Kenwood auto switch when I receive calls???

SkizeR... We've got some work to do!!!

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Old 06-24-2019   #4
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Default Re: Helix DSP Pro MK2 & Hi Res Music w/ iPhone XS

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Originally Posted by DanKind75 View Post
Holy CRAP! I just looked that up on their website. That might just work. But will the Kenwood auto switch when I receive calls???

SkizeR... We've got some work to do!!!
IDK about iPhone, but on android you can set one device to play media through BT, and one to handle phone calls. I *think* iphone can do this also.

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Old 06-24-2019   #5
 
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Do the files have drm? If not I'd turn em into flac or something the deck will handle and put them on a USB stick. That deck is really good at reading quickly large drives. I have 128g on mine and it works quite well.
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Old 06-24-2019   #6
 
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Default Re: Helix DSP Pro MK2 & Hi Res Music w/ iPhone XS

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Originally Posted by SkizeR View Post
IDK about iPhone, but on android you can set one device to play media through BT, and one to handle phone calls. I *think* iphone can do this also.
Just got off the phone with Apple. the iPhone doesn't support two bluetooth connections at the same time. I did ask if I could have it plugged into the Kenwood and stream to the DSP at the same time. That wouldn't work either. So... maybe another solution would be is to get an iPod Touch and have that wired directly to the DSP while the iPhone is plugged into the Kenwood just so I could still have access to carplay.

What do you guys think?

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Old 06-24-2019   #7
 
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Default Re: Helix DSP Pro MK2 & Hi Res Music w/ iPhone XS

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Do the files have drm? If not I'd turn em into flac or something the deck will handle and put them on a USB stick. That deck is really good at reading quickly large drives. I have 128g on mine and it works quite well.
I'm not sure what is "DRM"?!? The file are Apple lossless (ALAC). I have close to 500 songs that I'd rather not re-purchase.

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Old 06-24-2019   #8
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DanKind75 View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mahapederdon View Post
Do the files have drm? If not I'd turn em into flac or something the deck will handle and put them on a USB stick. That deck is really good at reading quickly large drives. I have 128g on mine and it works quite well.
I'm not sure what is "DRM"?!? The file are Apple lossless (ALAC). I have close to 500 songs that I'd rather not re-purchase.
Digital rights management. I was thinking you could convert them. But Apple did what they always do. It's most likely you can't cover them into an open format. That do that so you are stuck with there stuff for life.
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Old 06-24-2019   #9
 
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Default Re: Helix DSP Pro MK2 & Hi Res Music w/ iPhone XS

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Originally Posted by DanKind75 View Post
I'm not sure what is "DRM"?!? The file are Apple lossless (ALAC). I have close to 500 songs that I'd rather not re-purchase.
DRM is digital rights management. You may be able to convert the files using foobar2000 or something similar. Not too familiar with ALAC.

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Old 06-24-2019   #10
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Default Re: Helix DSP Pro MK2 & Hi Res Music w/ iPhone XS

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Just got off the phone with Apple. the iPhone doesn't support two bluetooth connections at the same time. I did ask if I could have it plugged into the Kenwood and stream to the DSP at the same time. That wouldn't work either. So... maybe another solution would be is to get an iPod Touch and have that wired directly to the DSP while the iPhone is plugged into the Kenwood just so I could still have access to carplay.

What do you guys think?
ipod would be the last thing i suggest. I'd suggest just converting your alac/aac files to flac or mp3

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Old 06-24-2019   #11
 
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Default Re: Helix DSP Pro MK2 & Hi Res Music w/ iPhone XS

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Originally Posted by SlvrDragon50 View Post
DRM is digital rights management. You may be able to convert the files using foobar2000 or something similar. Not too familiar with ALAC.
Alrighty... Spoke with another rep at Apple. Any music that I have purchased CAN be converted. There aren't any DRM's that I would have to worry about. Now for the Apple music files, those are protected by DRM. So I did a search for converting ALAC to FLAC and found this website;
Easiest Way to Convert Apple Lossless/ALAC Files to FLAC

Let me know what you guys think?...

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Old 06-24-2019   #12
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DanKind75 View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by SlvrDragon50 View Post
DRM is digital rights management. You may be able to convert the files using foobar2000 or something similar. Not too familiar with ALAC.
Alrighty... Spoke with another rep at Apple. Any music that I have purchased CAN be converted. There aren't any DRM's that I would have to worry about. Now for the Apple music files, those are protected by DRM. So I did a search for converting ALAC to FLAC and found this website;
Easiest Way to Convert Apple Lossless/ALAC Files to FLAC

Let me know what you guys think?...
Worth a shot. Although usually when I find a tutorial like that and download the program there's more involved. Signing up or subscription. Maybe other know of a good free program. Or even a buy once.
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Old 06-24-2019   #13
 
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Default Re: Helix DSP Pro MK2 & Hi Res Music w/ iPhone XS

I gotta say that this so called "audiophile" or "audio enthusiast" world is very small. Not many people know about the little details. Thank the audio Gods for DIYMA!!!

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Old 06-24-2019   #14
 
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I gotta say that this so called "audiophile" or "audio enthusiast" world is very small. Not many people know about the little details. Thank the audio Gods for DIYMA!!!
Audio Jesus. Haha. I'm not sure if you have a Mac or pc but this is what the Mac guys are saying is the best.

https://sourceforge.net/projects/xld/
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Old 06-24-2019   #15
 
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Default Re: Helix DSP Pro MK2 & Hi Res Music w/ iPhone XS

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Audio Jesus. Haha. I'm not sure if you have a Mac or pc but this is what the Mac guys are saying is the best.

https://sourceforge.net/projects/xld/
Very nice. Thanks. I have a MacBook Pro at home so i'll download it later. I'm thinking that I should put the FLAC music files on a flash drive to play through the Kenwood DDX9905S.

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Old 06-24-2019   #16
 
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Yes. That's how I have done it and the deck handles it great. Plus your phone still rings and I assume you can use carplay. I use android auto the same way.
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Old 06-24-2019   #17
 
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Default Re: Helix DSP Pro MK2 & Hi Res Music w/ iPhone XS

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Yes. That's how I have done it and the deck handles it great. Plus your phone still rings and I assume you can use carplay. I use android auto the same way.
Sweet! Yup - I could do CarPlay as long as I plug in my iPhone. Android can be done via Bluetooth. I use CarPlay mainly for WAZE & text messaging. Any recommendations on a good quality flash drive?

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Old 06-24-2019   #18
 
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I got a 128 micro SD card and put it in a small USB reader. But any small reliable USB drive will work. I plugged in my 2tb portable drive and it worked pretty good.

Heres the one I have. It might be too small cause I can't find it. Oops. But it works really good.

https://www.amazon.com/Rocketek-Alum.../dp/B06XTQZS4F

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Old 06-25-2019   #19
 
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Default Re: Helix DSP Pro MK2 & Hi Res Music w/ iPhone XS

Alright Gents...

I figured it all out. Converted all ALAC music files to FLAC using AVDShare Audio Converter and the music sounds extraordinary! Going forward I'll be using either HDTracks or Qobuz. Thanks for your help guys. This one was tricky.

Danny

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Old 06-25-2019   #20
 
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Originally Posted by DanKind75 View Post
Alright Gents...

I figured it all out. Converted all ALAC music files to FLAC using AVDShare Audio Converter and the music sounds extraordinary! Going forward I'll be using either HDTracks or Qobuz. Thanks for your help guys. This one was tricky.

Danny
Right on. I'm glad it all worked out for you.
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Old 06-25-2019   #21
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Default Re: Helix DSP Pro MK2 & Hi Res Music w/ iPhone XS

I didn't think Apple had High Res files in the iTunes store. I have my whole CD collection ripped to Apple Lossless and I was able to play it just fine on a 9905S at my local shop. The 9905S was marketed at people who wanted to play High Res music.

I really want to understand what the issue was with the 9905 since it's on my list for the next upgrade to my system. I play all my music from my iPhone.

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Old 06-26-2019   #22
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Hi Dan, I use an android headunit and connect one of its usb to the helix dsp pro 2 via Helix usb module.

With usb pro audio or onkyo hf player I can play all audio including dsd and dff hires files or even cd/dvd via android usb drive since many cd are still preferred, including cd for emma competition.

I just paid for android auto/carplay module for my wife's new mazda 6 and utterly disappointed with limited functions and apps ... not much different from 3 yrs ago when I deliberate to go brand AA headunits like Pioneer, Alpine, Carion etc. but glad I stuck with full android HU which is basically an android phone.

Many audiophiles here in Singapore use high end dap with coaxial or usb directly to the Helix dsp but it is not for me as I want a fully integrated solution which I currently have in my forester xt and not meddle with any gadget since safety should be my consideration also.

Cheers.

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Old 06-26-2019   #23
 
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Default Re: Helix DSP Pro MK2 & Hi Res Music w/ iPhone XS

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I didn't think Apple had High Res files in the iTunes store. I have my whole CD collection ripped to Apple Lossless and I was able to play it just fine on a 9905S at my local shop. The 9905S was marketed at people who wanted to play High Res music.

I really want to understand what the issue was with the 9905 since it's on my list for the next upgrade to my system. I play all my music from my iPhone.
Hey Tom. The Kenwood DDX9905S is a great head unit. My music from iTunes sounded very good. I just wanted and needed to experiment with the true capabilities for the 9905. Kenwood mentions it on their website. they don't support Apple's AAC or ALAC files. https://www.kenwood.com/usa/car/excelon/ddx9905s/

The way to convert AAC to ALAC on iTunes is to first make sure the the option for the highest bit rate is turned off!... Then you would high the song/songs you want to convert - click on "File" at top right of screen - scroll down to "Convert" and a drop down down menu would appear. The Click on "Apple Lossless". Which is ALAC. Here's a better explanation of the appropriate steps from apple.com;
https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT204310

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Old 07-08-2019   #24
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Default Re: Helix DSP Pro MK2 & Hi Res Music w/ iPhone XS

I used the Vox app (free) on my iPhone, plugged the iPhone to my HU via the USB cable. This bypasses the internal DAC of the phone and allows me to play my hires or flac files. iTunes can't do this as we all read above.

Bluetooth will almost never be satisfactory. Even the best out there.
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Old 07-08-2019   #25
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Default Re: Helix DSP Pro MK2 & Hi Res Music w/ iPhone XS

Maybe I’m missing something here but why not just use the CarPlay interface?

Most of my music library is apple lossless. I also have the kenwood 9905s. I have no issues with playback with my phone being the source of music through CarPlay.

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